BACKGROUND

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Lots of treats and no tricks...yet.

Happy Halloween! It's only about 7 p.m. here and already I'm almost out of candy. I had a bit of a novel idea this year. I decided to save up all the toys that come in the cereal boxes (mostly Corn Pops, which I like a lot) and give them out this Halloween. Well, apparently my house became known as the "toy house" among the trick-or-treaters and we had a surge of people. I had to call Dear Husband and ask him to pick up a couple of extra bags of candy on his way home. I would also like to note here that Dear Husband made fun of me for wanting to give out the toys along with the candy for Halloween. HA! Joke's on him.

Switching gears a bit, I couldn't let Peanut's first Halloween go by without getting her a costume. This year, she is Princess Peanut. She was a very good sport and seemed to like her costume, although I know she was thinking "What's the big deal? I'm a princess every day."

Switching gears once again, I just turned on the TV to see what scary movies were playing tonight and Poltergeist was on. I remember watching that as a kid and being scared to death. It's not so scary now, but it freaked me out when I was younger. I was always fascinated with the fact that two of the young actors involved in the films died at fairly early ages. One was murdered by her boyfriend and the other died from a bowel obstruction issue. More on that can be found here.

Hope everyone has a safe and Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Music to My Ears

I recently got a new cell phone and last night, I downloaded some ring tones to assign to various friends and family who call me. It was interesting to go through the song lists and choose music that matches the person to whom it was assigned. In some ways, it's a bit of a psychological exercise to choose songs for those you love. What they mean to me is reflected in my choices.

Here are the songs I chose for the four most important people in my life and why I chose them:

My dear husband: Our Song by Taylor Swift. The lyrics are quick and snappy. This song reminds me of the fun of dating and knowing that someone loves you.

Britt, my best friend and kindred spirit: How Far We've Come by Matchbox 20. The lyrics themselves seem depressing, but for me, it represents my relationship with Britt because when either of us feels our world is burning to the ground, we're always there for one another.

Mom: Mississippi Girl. My mother is originally from Mississippi and every time I hear this song, I think of her. After all she's been through, she still stays true to her roots.

Dad: These are My People by Rodney Atkins. My dad is a country boy at heart even though he's lived all over the world. This song makes me think of what my dad's life must have been like before he was a dad.

Another interesting exercise is to think about what song you would choose for yourself. Right now, my song is Summer Breeze. It's an old song, but describes exactly how I feel right now - relaxed, good, knowing everything is going to be all right.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Laugh and Take Notes

(Sorry about the profanity in the graphic...but then again, who hasn't thought these very same words?)

Something happened at work yesterday that really made me mad. I was still bitter this morning. And then...I thought about it and I started to laugh about it. And I realized that what happened is so absurd that it's funny. It feels good to be old enough to have perspective on such things.

Every weird thing that happens at my current job or that has happened to me at previous workplaces is just more fodder for the book I will eventually write detailing how to survive a variety of weird, abusive, and downright crazy workplaces. Until then, I laugh and take notes.

I am at a point in my life where it's hard for me to get angry and easy for me to let it go when I do. I am grateful that with age has come a solid middle emotional ground. Now, I know that everything truly does pass and that very little, if any, of it is worth getting upset about. And if it is worth getting upset about, it doesn't stay that way because there is a great perspective on life once you've seen enough pictures to build your own frame. In other words, you have a frame of reference that helps you to remember that the situation isn't forever and there is much to be learned from it.

I am actually enjoying the process of learning and growing as a person through the difficult experiences and the enjoyable ones. This is not to say my job is terrible and I am upset with it. It is not terrible and I am not upset with it. I enjoy my co-workers and I enjoy the challenge of dealing with my boss, who has a good heart, but a skewed sense of priorities. It's all about learning patience, reliance on God, and knowing with absolute certainty that in the end, it's all to the good.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Gummy Worms

Last night, I sat around in my nightgown on my living room sofa and clipped coupons while eating gummy worms and drinking sweet tea. This is what my life has come to. The upside is that clipping the coupons was actually productive because I belong to a coupon train and I have to send them out on Monday. So clipping them was getting one thing off my to-do list.

This week, I got another to-do off my list, although it was accidental. Part of my graduate program in psychology involves learning to do assessments on children (adults are next). I had to test three children and turn in reports on them. The last child had to be videotaped. On Thursday night, I got the videotaping test done. Friday night after completing that report, I realized that I didn't have to turn it in until Oct. 27. I had thought it was due this last Saturday. I'm proud of myself for getting something done early for school even if it was totally accidental.

In other news, work has been crazy these past two weeks. One person was let go, several were hired, and my boss has been stressing over things she doesn't need to stress about. That's par for the course though. I tell her to calm down, that we can deal with everything that comes up. And we can. She just has to start believing that.

So that has been my week. Here's hoping this next one has less to-do's, more gummy worms, and a barge full of calm.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Planning to Get Organized

My work bought me a planner last week. It's one of the really nice ones from FranklinCovey. I got to go to the FranklinCovey store and pick it out myself. Ah, the beauty of a company credit card. One of my co-workers went with me and we both got the same planner. The next morning, I sat at my work desk and put the planner together. It took me about an hour. I was really feeling stupid until my co-worker said it took her about 45 minutes. If I'm stupid, at least I'm not alone.

The time required to put it together was worth it - the planner is one that I feel I will get a lot out of. While I was in class this morning and the scattered, disorganized professor was rambling about something totally off-topic, I planned out the coming week in my planner for both work and personal items. It feels great having it all in one place and knowing what I need to do and when. It's a lot better than having lists made that have no real time or date of completion.

In other news, I took a plane to Victoria this weekend. I had to be there on Friday before the school closed so I could pick up some things I need for class. I couldn't leave work early enough to make the drive and get there on time so I took the commuter flight offered by Continental. It wasn't too expensive and I made it on time. I stayed at a different hotel this time and it was wonderful! I watched two good shows on TV and then went to bed. I had a king-sized bed to stretch out in and it was so nice to have all that room. But, I did miss Dear Husband and of course, my little Peanut. I will take her with me next weekend though.

I cannot wait until I am done with this class so I don't have to drive to Victoria every Saturday. It's really exhausting.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Chaos Lessened

It's been a good weekend. Well, at least it turned out that way in the end. I was stressed out on Friday because I had a test on Saturday in class. I got up early on Saturday and drove the 2.5 hours to Victoria, where I have my class every weekend. I had an extra passenger with me this time though. Peanut accompanied me on the trip. It's a lonely drive and a lonely stay in the hotel sometimes and I can't bring Dear Husband usually because he works a lot of the weekends. So it was a girls' trip with Peanut and me:)

I generally drive to Victoria early in the morning, take my class, then drive back the same day. Occasionally, I have driven over on Friday night and stayed until Saturday. This time, I decided to stay overnight on Saturday so I could relax and get some studying done. Unfortunately, when Peanut and I got to the Motel 6, where I usually stay, the only rooms they had available were smoking rooms. I do not, nor have I ever, smoked. But, I figured I could live with it. That was my first mistake. The room stank. REALLY stank. I didn't have time to deal with it right then though because I had to be in class in 15 minutes. So, I put Peanut in the bathroom with her food and water, and her little bed, and off I went.

I returned around 1 p.m. and Peanut and I took a nap for 2.5 hours. It was SO nice to lay down and sleep despite the stench. After that, Peanut went back into the bathroom and I went to have dinner and do a little shopping. Upon returning to the room, I got ready for bed and I had to remake it because, for some reason, the fitted sheet had come off. I turned down the fitted sheet and there was a dead bug. That was the last straw. Oh, and did I mention there was no phone in the room? Yeah, so I called the front desk from my cell phone because at this point, I already had my nightgown on. Peanut and I moved to a non-smoking, clean room with a phone. Ahhh...bliss. We slept all night and woke up refreshed in the morning. We got on the road about 8:30 a.m. and were home by 11:30.

I took a nice hot shower and laid down for a nap, which lasted almost three hours. Now, I'm relaxing and doing little things I've been wanting to get done. It's nice not to feel so chaotic now.